Ryan questions Obama at House GOP conference

Friday, January 29, 2010; 1:53 PM

After addressing the GOP House Issues Conference in Baltimore on Friday, President Obama took a series of questions from the lawmakers. Here is a transcript of one of the questions posed to the president:

REP. PAUL RYAN (R-WIS.): Mr. President, first of all, thanks for agreeing to accept our invitation here. It is a real pleasure and honor to have you with us here today.

OBAMA: Good to see you.

Is this your crew right here, by the way?

RYAN: Yes, this is my daughter Liza, my sons Charlie and Sam, and this is my wife Janna.

OBAMA: Hey, guys.

RYAN: Say "hi" to everybody.


I serve as the ranking member of the Budget Committee, so I want to talk a little budget, if you don't mind.


RYAN: The spending bills that you have signed into law, the domestic and discretionary spending has been increased by 84 percent. You now want to freeze spending at this elevated level beginning next year. This means that total spending in your budget would grow at 300ths of 1 percent less than otherwise. I would simply submit that we could do more and start now.

You've also said that you want to take a scalpel to the budget and go through it line by line. We want to give you that scalpel. I have a proposal with my home state senator, Russ Feingold, a bipartisan proposal, to create a constitutional version of the line- item veto.

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